Monday, April 19, 2010


I wanted to see the ocean--really badly, but we live very far from it. We did the next best thing and drove up along the bay stopping when we could get down to the water. It was a beautiful sunny day and not too windy or chilly. I have to admit that standing looking out over the bay, seeing that long water stretch to the horizon is almost as good as standing looking out over the ocean. I said, almost. On the way home we stopped at Joe Rouer's in Duval for burgers. Mmm, there's nothing like a cheeseburger with fried onions at Joe's. We'll watch what we eat today.

Once again I wasn't very motivated to write, but made myself put pencil to paper and I'm not unhappy with the results. This writing every day thing really works! I read in a writing how-to book when I was just getting started that you shouldn't expect to be able to sit down and write something wonderful the first time. Athletes train, artists sketch, and musicians practice; it makes sense that writers would have to write to improve.

April 17 & 18--Island of St. George, Montenegro. The bells that rang the Angelus from the old monastery out on the island carried around in the bowl of the surrounding hills. The buzz of the outboard on the water taxi seemed to be a part of the sound, like the drone of a bagpipes. Claire sipped a glass of wine and the age-old words of the prayer that she had learned as a child at her grandmother's kitchen table came to mind. "The angel of the Lord declared unto Mary, and she conceived of the Holy Ghost..." She hadn't thought of that in years. The toll of the little bell in the country parish a mile away from Grandma's farm was pale in comparison to the glorious sounds from the steeple across the water but somehow the sound transported her back to that farmhouse kitchen. How many thousands of miles separated her balcony from that room, and how many years? The thought that somehow Grandma was looking down from Heaven made her uncomfortable. She might be a grown woman and too sophisticated and worldly to go to church or to believe in Heaven for herself but she knew that her grandma had believed and was no doubt right up there with God. "Edward," she said to the man at the laptop inside the villa's study, "we need to reconsider our plans. Maybe this museum isn't the job for us." She knew she'd go straight to Hell if she was any more involved in Edward's plan to steal the one tiny Faberge egg in the tiny, unsecured, town museum. The bells pealed again and the remembered voices of her family spoke in her head, "Hail Mary, full of grace..."

Okay, I'm not sure about what she and Edward were up to, but it was late and you get the sense that they're up to no good. I can fix it later.


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